Free Press Journal

We are looking for a 100-run 1st innings lead: Bharat Arun


bharat arun

Colombo: Indian bowling coach Bharat Arun has said that his side is looking at a 100-run first innings lead against Sri Lanka in the second cricket Test. In reply to India’s first innings score of 393, Sri Lanka ended second day’s play at 140 for three.

“There is a long way to go in this game. But so far, we must be pretty happy. Our lower order has contributed quite well today and also we have kept them under check. We are probably looking for a lead of about 100 runs. If we get a lead of 100 runs on this track, it is beginning to wear and there were signs of spinners extracting some turn,” bowling coach Arun told mediapersons at the end of the day’s play.

The coach assessed that the pitch at P sara Oval is comparatively harder than the one at Galle. “This track is a lot harder than what we had in Galle. So there will be more bounce, but maybe not as much turn. The pitch began easing out on day one itself and overnight unbeaten batsman Wriddhiman Saha rode his luck in the morning to score his second successive half-century.

“Then India made three inroads into the Lankan batting in remainder of the play, putting up a disciplined performance on a placid wicket. To be doing well in Test matches, you need to be bowling with a lot of discipline. “This is something that we have worked really hard on. Today it was there for everyone to see. Restricting them to under-three an over, it was pretty good bowling,” said the coach.

“After the Galle Test, we decided to make them work for every run. We reworked our fields and looked at the batsmen’s strengths and these are the areas they were really scoring at. And we said we are going to plug those very areas where they are going to be looking for runs. So far it has worked well for us,” he added.

Arun praised Stuart Binny’s effort with the ball even though the all-rounder was unlucky not to get Kaushal Silva’s wicket as he had overstepped. “Stuart bowled exceptionally well today but again, it’s a big lesson for him losing a Test wicket to a no-ball. You have got to get back and work so that you don’t make the same mistake again. It’s a costly lesson but yes, it is pretty good,” Arun said.